Thursday, February 9, 2012

Book Mark: Final Day of Canada Reads 2012

And.....Carmen Aguirre's Something Fierce was crowned the Canada Reads 2012 champion today. Woohoo!!! Its advocate--rapper Shad--was on point throughout the debates and I am very happy that not only the panel but also other listeners felt the right book was victorious.

Renowned actor Carmen Aguirre skillfully pilots readers straight into her girlhood initiation into a revolutionary family and ultimate decision, at age nineteen, to commit herself to the life of a radical. With vivid immediacy, Aguirre paints the political context and intimate experience of 1980s-era South American struggles against neo-liberal dictatorships: What does it feel like to be a child in the gun sights of Augusto Pinochet's henchmen? How did the US-backed governments of revolutionary Latin America collaborate in eliminating dissent at the cost of a still untold number of ruined lives? 

Refreshingly frank, personable, and often wry, Something Fierce recalls the work of Gioconda BellĂ­ and Assata Shakur, paying special attention to the particular demands made of revolutionary women—to leave the raising of their children to others or directly involve them in struggle, to eschew romantic love for revolutionary action, to embrace "revolution" over "culture."

A literal page-turner, Something Fierce reveals how "normal" people confront a life of privation and communal action, of terror alongside an unerring dedication that offers its own satisfactions. Bearing witness to the costs, beauty, and even seductions of resistance, Aguirre impels us to question: Do we choose revolution, or does revolution choose us?

Ken Dryden's The Game is a worthy read as well. No shame in being runner-up!

Widely acknowledged as the best hockey book ever written and lauded by Sports Illustrated as one of the Top 10 Sports Books of All Time, The Game is a reflective and thought-provoking look at a life in hockey. Intelligent and insightful, former Montreal Canadiens goalie and former President of the Toronto Maple Leafs, Ken Dryden captures the essence of the sport and what it means to all hockey fans. He gives us vivid and affectionate portraits of the characters — Guy Lafleur, Larry Robinson, Guy Lapointe, Serge Savard, and coach Scotty Bowman among them — that made the Canadiens of the 1970s one of the greatest hockey teams in history. But beyond that, Dryden reflects on life on the road, in the spotlight, and on the ice, offering up a rare inside look at the game of hockey and an incredible personal memoir. This commemorative edition marks the 20th anniversary of The Game's original publication. It includes black and white photography from the Hockey Hall of Fame and a new chapter from the author. Take a journey to the heart and soul of the game with this timeless hockey classic.

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